John moved with his family from Winnipeg to Yellowknife in 1969. That summer, he taught himself how to play guitar from a “Credence Clearwater Revival” songbook. In the fall, John met and played with other young musicians at William McDonald Junior high school. His music education continued at Sir John Franklin High school where he learned to arrange parts for the horn section of his band “Stonehenge”. Through his high school years, John played guitar and bass with various bands in the thriving Yellowknife music scene. In 1976, he left Yellowknife to further his music education at Grant MacEwan College in Edmonton.